About The National Museum Of African American History And Culture
Since opening Sept. 24, 2016, the National Museum of African American History and Culture has welcomed nearly 5 million visitors. Occupying a prominent location next to the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the nearly 400,000-square-foot museum is the nations largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history. For more information about the museum, visit nmaahc.si.edu, follow @NMAAHC on , , and Snapchator call Smithsonian information at 633-1000.
Before You Visit Share The Why Behind Your Visit Preview And Ask For Questions:
We visited a few years ago when my daughter was 5 and my son was 2. Back then, I read a picture book of Ruby Bridges story as an entry point to talk about segregation and inequality. We did not go to the History Galleries then.
For this visit, my kids are 8 and 5 and we talked more specifically about why we are visiting this time. We talked about the evils of slavery in broad terms and the history of inequality. I showed them the museums website ahead of time.
Entry Tickets To Museums
For over a month, I have attempted to get timed entry tickets to National Holocaust Museum and National African American Museum, but none available. I start my search every day at 7 a.m. and look throughout the day. What is going on? thanks.
19 replies to this topic
NMAAHC tickets are available from 8am. Are you checking exactly then? It says there are a limited number of tickets.
Good luck its an amazing place to visit, tho the website says some parts are closed at the moment.
From the Holocaust museum:
Advance tickets online: Tickets through May 2022 are available now.
Same-day tickets online: A limited number of same-day tickets will be available online each day at 7:00 a.m. ET.
It appears to simply be sold out. So, when you are in DC, at 7am you need to log on and hope for same day tickets.
When is your trip? The NMAAHC might not have released May yet but April is sold out. On our December trip, I scored same day tickets when logging in at the prescribed time . There were a lot of open tickets.
I just got one yesterday morning for the same day, it was easy . I didnt even check until maybe 11 am, but Im willing to go in the afternoon, in fact, I prefer it. Tons were available for 3 pm or so. And that was a Sunday, a real busy day. I think there were a lot for noon, also, but I didnt want to go that early.
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A Guide To Visiting Nmaahc
The NMAAHC is a very popular museum and you can expect lines to enter, especially right when the museum opens at 10am and for walk-up entry on weekends at 1pm. Even if you have obtained a timed entry pass, you might encounter lines at the security entrance during peak season.
Once you clear security, the museum itself is self-guided. All guests enter the museum in Heritage Hall We suggest taking the escalators downstairs to the lower level, known as the Concourse. This is where you can access the three floors of history galleries and it is the only way to enter that portion of the museum.
You can expect there might be a line at this point, especially during peak season. The history gallery experience begins in an elevator that takes you to the lowest level of the museum. The first exhibit highlights the Atlantic Slave Trade and it works its way chronologically up to 2008 and the election of the first African-American President.
The history galleries empty you right next to the Contemplative Court, a perfect spot to reflect and relax before heading upstairs. On the upper levels , you will find exhibitions highlighting the cultural contributions of African-Americans, community galleries, and more. You can find a detailed breakdown of the museum here: https://nmaahc.si.edu/visit/maps
Whats Inside The Museum
The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture is a state-of-the-art building that addresses nearly every aspect of the African American experience, covering the arts, slavery, the Civil Rights Movement, athletics and much more. The buildings exterior, conceived by Ghanaian-born architect David Adjaye, is artfully made up of a three-tiered, bronze-colored screen. This lattice pays tribute to the intricate ironwork forged by enslaved African Americans in the southern United States.
The museums collection of artifacts is astounding: 3,500 are on view, with another 35,000 or so in the collection. Standout items include a shawl given to Harriet Tubman by Queen Victoria, training aircraft used by the Tuskegee Institute, an invitation to President Obamas 2009 inauguration and a boombox owned by Chuck D of Public Enemy.
Navigating the entirety of the NMAAHC would be very difficult to accomplish in one visit, and the breadth of its exhibits is astonishing. However, there are several displays that you should be aware of before you go.
The Musical Crossroads exhibit details the history African American music, from the arrival of the first Africans to today. From jazz to hip-hop, African American musicians brought forth new forms of expression that lit a candle for liberty, justice and change. You will be able to experience the emergence of some of Americas finest art forms and the amazing creative expressions that came from them.
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How Much Do Tickets To The Museum Of African American History In Washington Dc Cost
You have no excuse not to visit this iconic museum, as admission is free, as it is a Smithsonian museum. However, you do need to book your ticket in advance. This booking process was taken since its inception, as the museum is usually very crowded.
Tickets are timed passes, i.e. your ticket is valid only at a specific time of the day. If you arrive late, your pass will not be valid and you will not be allowed entry. So it is best to be punctual. You can also tour the entire museum until closing time, at approximately 17:30.
On the other hand, I recommend you book your ticket in advance, as there are a limited number of passes available each day, so you’d better be cautious! Plan your trip to the Washington DC Museum of African American History well in advance. You can book up to 30 days before your visit.
Only 6 passes are allowed per person. However, if you are travelling with a group of more than 10 people, I recommend booking a group pass. These tickets are issued at 8am. If you schedule your visit on the same day, if passes are available, you will be able to watch online from 8.15am.
Accessibility At The Museum
The museum is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act and has accessible facilities and entrances. A limited number of free manual wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis but you can request one when reserving a timed-entry pass.
American Sign Language interpretation and access services are available for scheduled programming by contacting the museum with two weeks advance notice. T-Loops are available at the Welcome Desk and open captioning is included in all exhibition videos. There are National Park Service designated accessible parking spaces along Madison Drive NW adjacent to the museum.
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Review The Museum Map Ahead Of Time
The NMAAHC is the newest Smithsonian and in my opinion, the most innovative in terms of architecture communicating meaning. The museums history exhibits start 3 levels underground beginning in the 1400s and then as you move through history you rise up through the levels. The ground level has the Contemplative Court and then the 3 above ground levels focus on the cultural and historical achievements.
We Are Excited To Welcome Groups From Around The Country And The World
The National Museum of African American History and Culture welcomes groups of 10 or more to reserve free timed-entry passes. Please be aware we are operating at a reduced capacity for visitation. To help you prepare for your visit, we have provided the following guidance when planning your visit.
- Large groups must form smaller group of 10 to enhance your experience and maximize safety.
- Children ages 16 and younger must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
- One chaperone is required for each group of 10 students.
- Weekdays, Monday through Thursday, are our least crowded days.
- Visits after 2:00 p.m. can be less crowded.
- Visitors are able to enter the museum until 4:00 p.m.
- The museum is open until 5:30 p.m.
If you arrive more than two hours past your entry time, entrance is not guaranteed and is based on capacity.
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Notable Items In The Collection
The Smithsonian Institution listed the number of items in the museum collection in 2012 as either more than 18,000 pieces or more than 25,000 pieces.CBS News reported in May 2015 that the collection size had grown to 33,000 objects, although this had risen to more than 40,000 objects by May 2019. About 3,500 items are on display to the public.
Items obtained by the museum initially were received, conserved, and stored at the Smithsonian Museum Support Center in Suitland, Maryland. Dozens of permanent curatorial staff and temporary contractors accessed the items, repaired them, and conserved them in a temperature- and humidity-controlled environment. Renée Anderson, the NMAAHC’s head of collections, oversaw the effort. After artifacts were selected for display, graphics and labels for each item were manufactured. Display cases for each item were also purchased, and exhibiting mounts or specially designed cases handcrafted for particularly fragile, important, or unusually sized objects. Museum officials said all artifacts and displays will be moved into the new museum in the summer of 2016, along with the museum’s 175 full-time employees.
In November 2016, NBA player LeBron James donated $2.5 million to support the museum’s exhibit on the accomplishments of boxer Muhammad Ali.
As of September 2016, notable items in the collection included:
20th and 21st centuries
Modern Art Installations
Does The Smithsonian Have Free Admission
There is no admission fee to all museums or zoos, except the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City, which is free. Only the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the National Zoo, and the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City require time-entry passes.
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Your Guide To The Attractions In Dc That Are Free And Which Require Tickets
Many of Washington, DCâs major attractions are open to the public and do not require tickets, including the Smithsonian museums, the Smithsonian National Zoo, the National Gallery of Art, and the monuments and memorials on the National Mall.
You can buy tickets for some of Washington, DCâs most popular ticketed attractions including Fordâs Theatre at the venue or on their website. Some attractions offer discounts to those who buy tickets online ahead of their visit including the Presidents Gallery by Madame Tussauds Washington, DC. You can also purchase 24 or 48-hour, hop-on, hop-off bus tour tickets with Big Bus Tours, which will allow you view the wonders of the National Mall at your own convenience.
While some attractions are free, they require timed passes to save visitors from waiting in long lines. Timed passes are available to visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and a limited amount of same-day passes are available online the day of your visit. The passes are printed featuring a one-hour time range, within which you may enter the museum.
What To See At The Museum
Start downstairs in the sobering Slavery and Freedom exhibition, which covers the period from 1400 to 1877. From there, work your way through two more history exhibitions, Defending Freedom, Defining Freedom: The Era of Segregation, 1876-1968 and A Changing America: 1968 and Beyond.
As you go up to the upper floors of the building, you will enter the community and culture galleries on the 3rd and 4th floors, where African American achievements in sport, music, theater and visual arts are joyfully celebrated.
Highlights include Double Victory: The African American Military Experience, which is designed to convey a sense of appreciation and respect for the military service of African Americans from the American Revolution to the War on Terror.
Visitors can connect to the museum’s free wifi network, “SI-Visitor” and download its mobile app to complement their museum visit and discover additional stories in the collection. The museum’s Sweet Home Café is a popular lunch stop for visitors.
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How To Get Free Tickets To The National Museum Of African American History & Culture
The Smithsonians National Museum of African American History and Culture opened in September of 2016. It is an amazing museum that is worth a visit on on any trip to Washington, DC. That said, its still very new and very popular, so unlike other museums on the National Mall, you need a free ticket if you want to go. Its not difficult to get one but you will have to wake up early.
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How Do The Tickets Work
The Smithsonian is distributing timed passes, meaning entries will be staggered in 15-minute intervals. Theres no limit on how long people can spend inside the museum, which spans the entire arc of black history in America, from the 15th-century origins of the Atlantic slave trade to today. The museum opens with five floors of exhibits, with more than 3,000 objects on display along with 13 interactive exhibits and nearly 200 video features. The Smithsonian recommends multiple visits.
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Siting And Design Competition
On February 8, 2005, with the site selection committee still deliberating, President Bush again endorsed placing the museum on the National Mall.
The site selection committee did not issue its recommendation until January 31, 2006a full 13 months late. It recommended the site west of the National Museum of American History. The area was part of the Washington Monument grounds, but had been set aside for a museum or other building in the L’Enfant Plan of 1791 and the McMillan Plan of 1902. The United States Department of State originally planned to build its headquarters there in the early 20th century, and the National World War II Memorial Advisory Board had considered the parcel in 1995. On March 15, 2005, the Smithsonian named Dr. Lonnie G. Bunch III to be the Director of the National African American Museum of History and Culture.
The design submitted by the Freelon Group/Adjaye Associates/Davis Brody Bond won the design competition. The above-ground floors featured an inverted step pyramid surrounded by a bronze architectural scrim, which reflected a crown used in Yoruba culture.
The Smithsonian estimated in February 2012 that museum would to open in 2015. Until then, the museum would occupy a gallery on the second floor of the National Museum of American History.
Check Out The Online Portal
The museum opened a free-to-use web portal that helps people explore issues of race, racism and racial identity called Talking About Race in 2020. It examines how forces surrounding racial identity shape every aspect of society in the US, from the economy and politics to the broader culture. It has videos, online exercises, scholarly articles and over 100 multi-media resources tailored for educators, parents and caregivers and individuals committed to racial equality. The portal is free and does not require a registration or sign-up to use.
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With Nmaahc Mobile You Can
- Search for objects from our collection found throughout the Museum
- Explore stories from our inaugural exhibitions
- Watch videos and experience AR features to enhance your visit
- Connect with social media to share your favorite stories
- Plan your visit and explore all 8 levels of the Museum with our floor-by-floor maps
National Museum Of African American History And Culture Washington Dc: Hours Address National Museum Of African American History And Culture Reviews: 5/5
- Federal Triangle 6 min walk
- Smithsonian 7 min walk
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Tips For Visiting The Washington Dc Museum Of African American History
The Museum of African American History in Washington DC is one of the best museums you can visit in this city. That’s why I recommend that you take into account several factors to make your visit incredible:
Influx of tourists: even though it is not one of the most iconic places in Washington and it is a relatively new museum, it receives many tourists. So I recommend that you visit between 10am and noon on any day of the week. Be aware that on weekends it tends to be very crowded, especially after noon.
If you have no choice but to visit the museum during peak hours, try to arrive at least 1 hour before your ticket time. The queues are usually very long and this can delay the rest of your day in Washington.
If this is your first time in Washington DC, you may not know how to use public transport. So the best thing to do is to check the metro map and bus line stations. Keep your smartphone handy to confirm your route on Google Maps.
I recommend you to bring your smartphone with you to take some pictures and selfies with your companions. Please note that it is forbidden to take pictures of the works of art, unless otherwise stated.